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Brett Hendey

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Everything posted by Brett Hendey

  1. Timo The Cape Police researcher has responded, and, unfortunately, he doesn't have the attestation and other papers for your man. However, he wrote that, since the man became an officer, his papers may have been transferred to Pretoria. If such a search has not already been done in the Military Archives in Pretoria, then it may be worth getting someone to do it. Regards Brett
  2. Timo I have forwarded the link to your last post to an expert on all matters relating to the Cape Police. He may be able to give you more information. Regards Brett
  3. Timo All the men who served in the GSWA Campaign were awarded the standard WWI trio of medals, with the Victory Medal being the bilingual South African version. Usually (or always?), the only military record of the men who served only in GSWA is a single card that includes very basic information. This includes two rubber stamps filled in to show when, firstly the 1914/15 Star was despatched, and, secondly, when the British War and Victory Medals were despatched to the man concerned. There are local researchers who will copy this card for a fee, The person I have used is a member of this forum - aud. Regards Brett
  4. Very interesting relics! Thank you for posting them and I will look forward to seeing more. I will tell a friend with an interest in the SAAF during WWII of your discovery. Regards Brett
  5. kingsman64 Thank you for sharing with us the story of a gallant young man. His story is now known by many more people, and so, although he and his generation are gone, he is still not forgotten. Regards Brett
  6. Another very unusual PoW medal group and an interesting story to go with it. Thank you for sharing with us. I wonder if 'friendly' locals were characteristic of Austria? Regards Brett
  7. Dave Thank you for your very interesting posts. Also, for the link. I had no idea that this was such a rich field for collecting and research. Regards Brett
  8. I cannot now remember if you have posted the medals of one of the South Africans captured at Sandfontein at the very start of the German South West Africa campaign. The Germans won a great victory, although the casualties were numbered in dozens and scores - nothing like the carnage in Europe. I also cannot remember the number of PoW's, but there were many. Regards Brett
  9. That is a great find, and a great story, John! It is interesting to read about the situation in the Cameroons campaign in view of the recent acknowledgement of genocide in German South West Africa in the early 1900's. Regards Brett
  10. You can also try private researchers. One such is Audrey Portmann, who is, or was, a member here (aud). Her address is: rhino.research@icon.co.za Brett
  11. My wife had a relative who was the pilot of a SAAF plane that crashed on landing during the Abyssinian Campaign. Although injured, he escaped the burning plane, but then went back in a vain effort to save a crewman. He was terribly burned and disfigured for life. Since his younger brother, a RAF pilot, had shortly before been killed in a crash in England, General Smuts arranged for him to be flown back to South Africa, so his mother could be near to him. He spent the next three years at the Brenthurst Clinic. He returned to active service and took part in the Italian Campaign, where he once had to bale out of his burning Spitfire. His courage and fortitude was never officially acknowledged. Brett
  12. Rob, I hope that you do find a SAAF PoW group, and I will look forward to reading the resultant post. Regards Brett Swales is no longer officially remembered here. The highway in Durban named in his honour has been renamed after a "struggle hero", who was executed as a terrorist in an earlier time.
  13. Rob We have much in common! The North African campaign was one in which many South Africans were involved, so it has been of particular interest to me. Col Keyes and his VC action is on one of the VC cards in my collection, so I have known about him for a long time. Another card from the North African campaign is my favourite. It shows Sgt Quentin Smythe of the SA Forces in his VC action. Smythe was at the high school in Estcourt that I attended in the 1950's, by which time his helmet and bayonet were on display in the foyer of the school hall. Smythe served in Natal's premier regiment, the Royal Natal Carbineers, whose Zulu War badge I use as my avatar. Another indirect connection is that the Estcourt Municipality annually gave a university scholarship named in Smythe's honour, and it helped me in my first three years at the University of Natal. With your interest in the RAF I am sure that you know that two of the RAF's WWII VC's went to men from Natal- Squadron Leader J R Nettleton and Major E Swales DFC (SAAF, seconded to RAF). Regards Brett
  14. Thank you for replying to my post, Rob. The wings are in a small cardboard box together with all the buttons from the tunic, as well as an identity disc. Other contents of the box include a small Union Jack and incomplete set of cards depicting 'British Empire Victoria Cross Heroes' from WWII performing the deeds that won them the VC. From this you will be able to deduce one of my childhood interests! Regards Brett
  15. After the conclusion of the North African campaign in World War II, South Africans were given home leave before embarking on the Italian campaign. One such man was Captain J O de Waal, South African Air Force. When he went north again he left behind with his parents a tunic he had worn in North Africa. On 25 May 1944 he was killed in action. In addition to his parents, he left behind a widow and a young son. His father gave me the wings during the 1950's. Brett
  16. Dante I am filled with admiration! By rescuing such medals you are shining a light again on men who should not be forgotten. Regards Brett
  17. What an amazing find! Since he had such a distinguished career, his medals should have ended up either in a museum, or with a collector who would have treasured them. I once owned the QSA medal of a bandsman in Carleton's regiment in South Africa and I thought it to be pretty special. Those of his Colonel would have been in a different league! Regards Brett
  18. Gunner 1 Thank you for your comments. The only other QSA's to artillerymen in my collection are to two members of the Natal Naval Volunteers, who were attached to the Royal Navy's Naval Brigade. One was besieged in Ladysmith and earned the Defence of Ladysmith clasp, while the other man took part in the relief operations and earned the Relief of Ladysmith and Tugela Heights clasps.
  19. Gunner1 I agree with Rob.- a great group! The Nicholson's Nek battle was one of the early warning's to the British military establishment that the Boers were a force to be reckoned with, and that the war would be unlike all the others fought in the Empire during the last half of the 19th Century. Shown below are the medals of a much less illustrious member of the 10th Mounted Battery, Christopher Stanley Mizon, who escaped being captured at Nicholson's Nek. Mizon settled in South Africa after the war, and fought in German East Africa during World War I. Like many men in this campaign, he was discharged as medically unfit. Brett Shown below are the medals of Captain J M Comrie, who served with the Natal Carbineers during the Boer War, 1906 Natal Rebellion, and the German South West Africa campaign of World War I. He later served in German East Africa with the 8th South African Horse. For his long service, he was awarded both the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal for other ranks and the CAF Officer's Decoration. The Comrie family has sent men to all the wars and rebellions involving the old Colony of Natal and, later, South Africa between 1879 (the Anglo-Zulu War) and 1994 (SA's 'Border Wars'). A previous custodian of these medals had them re-ribboned and mounted for wear. Brett
  20. David I echo Paul's comments. You have much to give this forum and I hope that you will become a regular contributor. Regards Brett
  21. I hope that you can get permission to post the photograph, Gordon. Over the years, I have seen no more that two or three photographs of such groups. Regards Brett
  22. Gordon Thank you for a clear and concise account of this interesting medal. Having one in a CMP medal group would be a great coup for a medal collector. Regards Brett
  23. John That is an amazing medal and a great story to go with it. Congratulations and thank you for sharing with us. With you, Rob and Brian as members, the GMIC has PoW's and their medals well covered! Regards Brett
  24. Dante This is indeed a wonderful post about the life of an exceptional man, and I learnt a great deal from it. Thank you for a great start to a Sunday morning. Regards Brett
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